- Ruto Commits to Ending Kenya-Uganda Lake Victoria Conflict
- Addressing Longstanding Kenya-Uganda Fishing Dispute
- Talks Scheduled for Resolution of Kenya-Uganda Lake Victoria Dispute
President William Ruto has pledged to work towards resolving the ongoing dispute between Kenya and Uganda concerning the detention of Kenyan fishermen in Uganda. He made this commitment during his second-day tour of the larger Nyanza region, while addressing the residents of Homa Bay County.
President Ruto shared that he will engage in discussions with his Ugandan counterpart, Yoweri Museveni, on October 10, 2023, in Uganda. The primary focus of their talks will be to address this pressing issue.
Governor Gladys of Homa Bay had requested President Ruto’s assistance in this matter during his regional tour, and he affirmed his commitment to it, stating, “I will be paying my elder brother a visit in Uganda, and this is one of the issues that is lined up on the agenda. I want to give my assurances that I will put this matter to rest.”
The dispute between Kenya and Uganda revolves around fishing rights in Lake Victoria, the largest freshwater lake in Africa, which is vital for the neighboring communities, particularly for their fishing activities. This lake is shared by Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania, and competition for its resources has led to conflicts among these nations.
Over time, Kenyan fishermen have faced arrests and detentions in Uganda for fishing in areas that Uganda claims as its territorial waters. The core of the dispute revolves around fishing rights and territorial boundaries within Lake Victoria.
Migingo Island, which is central to the dispute, has a predominantly Kenyan population. Tensions have risen due to conflicting claims regarding the island’s ownership.
This situation has escalated over the years, resulting in reports of shootings, arrests, and clashes involving the Fisheries Protection Unit, Kenya Coast Guards, and security teams from both countries. These incidents have led to casualties and heightened tensions between the two nations.
Efforts have been made to address the Kenya-Uganda fishing dispute and combat illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing in the region. Security teams from Kenya and Uganda have engaged in discussions several times to seek a peaceful resolution to the ongoing conflicts.
However, despite these efforts, the issue remains unresolved, and tensions persist.